Lost in Transactions 4/27-5/3/09: Teams shuffle rostersby Evan Brunell
May 05, 2009
This week in Lost in Transactions, several teams underwent significant shuffling. The Oakland Athetics and Cleveland Indians made some wholesale changes, while the Red Sox welcomed back Julio Lugo.
|Travis Hafner (Icon/SMI)|
Arizona Diamondbacks activated RHP Tom Gordon from the 15-day disabled list.
Boston Red Sox activated SS Julio Lugo from the 15-day disabled list.
Lugo comes into a tough situation in Boston: career minor league journeyman Nick Green has impressed with his range, throwing arm and offense to the point where Red Sox fans would much prefer to see him at short than Lugo.
Prior to he year, Green had only 23 career games at shortstop. He's notched 17 so far this year and despite his unfamiliarity with the position (six errors), he's shown a fantastic throwing arm and an impressive 9.7 UZR/150. Indeed, his 12 OOZ plays rank him tied for third in all of baseball. This is with roughly half the amount of innings that Jason Bartlett and Marco Scutaro, the leaders in the category, hold. Surely the Red Sox will gladly trade six errors for a strong throwing arm and tremendous range.
Lugo has also boasted strong range throughout his career. In Lugo's only full year with the Red Sox (2007), he notched 55 OOZ plays, good enough for 10th in all of the league. What Green does that Lugo does not is take advantage of his throwing arm and see the ball into the first-baseman's mitt. Lugo's major issue is turning easy ground balls into errors and throwing the ball away due to poor positioning. Green's handicap here is simply not being used to the position, as he boasts a strong .983 FPCT at second.
Lugo has already made two costly errors, costing the Sox a game the other day against Tampa. He looks uncertain at the plate, certainly a byproduct of not having the full spring training experience. From here on out, Lugo will be splitting time at short with Green until Lugo not only reaches playing shape but performs as such. If he continues to struggle, I wouldn't be surprised to see Lugo land on the DL yet again with a phantom injury once Jed Lowrie is prepared to return.
This much is clear: Nick Green has bought himself several additional years as a major league utilityman with his play so far.
Texas Rangers placed CF Josh Hamilton on the 15-day disabled list.
Brandon Backe assigned to Round Rock Express from Houston Astros.
RHP Cory Wade assigned to Inland Empire 66ers from Los Angeles Dodgers.
RHP Jason Schmidt assigned to Inland Empire 66ers from Los Angeles Dodgers.
3B Ryan Freel assigned to Delmarva Shorebirds from Baltimore Orioles.
RHP Casey Janssen assigned to Dunedin Blue Jays from Toronto Blue Jays.
New York Mets designated LHP Casey Fossum for assignment.
San Diego Padres designated RHP Eulogio De La Cruz for assignment.
Boston Red Sox optioned Michael Bowden to Pawtucket Red Sox.
San Francisco Giants optioned 2B Eugenio Velez to Fresno Grizzlies.
Arizona Diamondbacks optioned RHP Bobby Korecky to Reno Aces.
New York Mets called up LHP Ken Takahashi from Buffalo Bisons.
Takahashi is a 40-year old rookie, something you don't see very often. Even though he was just recalled, he's already being considered to replace Oliver Perez in the rotation. He's hurled 2.2 innings so far, allowing one hit and one walk. He only throws his fastball 88 mph, so he relies a lot on his offspeed stuff. Indeed, he's only thrown his fastball 60.5 percent of the time so far on the year. He predominantly throws a changeup at 81 mph and mixes in a slider and curve.
The lefty was rather impressive in 11.2 innings at Triple-A. He struck out nine and walked six—not exactly a great ratio—but limited batters to 10 innings and a 1.17 ground ball/fly ball ratio. He had been signed by the Toronto Blue Jays to a minor league contract earlier in the year but was released in February. Over 14 seasons in Japan, he notched a 4.23 ERA and 66-87 record. Certainly not someone that makes MLB teams fall all over themselves to acquire, but he's impressed so far. Deception is likely a factor, as he has a high leg kick and hides the ball extremely well as a result.
I'm bearish on his chances to stick as a starter, but as a reliever, he can be a dependable lefty for the Mets.
San Diego Padres called up RHP Chad Gaudin from Portland Beavers.
This is Gaudin's fifth organization, odd for a player boasting a career 4.46 ERA in 459.2 innings and still only 26 years old. He's started two games so far for the Padres and hasn't lit the scoreboard up (both in the good and bad ways). For an organization desperate for pitching, adding a young arm like Gaudin's is great. He's relying more on his changeup so far this year, although that could be representative of a small sample size. One concern is that his fastball is averaging only 89.2 mph, the lowest it has since his rookie year at age 20.
San Francisco Giants recalled RHP Osiris Matos from Fresno Grizzlies.
Houston Astros placed RHP Jose Valverde on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 27, 2009. Strained right calf.
Cincinnati Reds placed 3B Edwin Encarnacion on the 15-Day disabled list. Chip fracture in left wrist.
When are the Reds going to cave in and trade him to an American League team where he can DH?
San Francisco Giants placed CF Andres Torres on the 15-Day disabled list. Strained left hamstring.
Baltimore Orioles activated 3B Melvin Mora from the 15-day disabled list.
Washington Nationals activated LF Willie Harris from the 15-day disabled list.
Carlos Ruiz assigned to Reading Phillies from Philadelphia Phillies.
RHP Cha Seung Baek assigned to Lake Elsinore Storm from San Diego Padres.
C Brian McCann assigned to Myrtle Beach Pelicans from Atlanta Braves.
San Diego Padres designated RHP Mike Ekstrom for assignment.
Washington Nationals optioned Justin Maxwell to Syracuse Chiefs.
Baltimore Orioles optioned Matt Albers to Norfolk Tides.
Despite being surprisingly solid for the Orioles last year in 49 innings, it was unlikely his 26/22 K/BB ratio could sustain a 3.49 ERA. Indeed, this year he has given up 16 hits in 9.1 innings for a 7.71 ERA. His K/BB ratio is now 1/1 on the season and has been hit extremely hard, as his 27.8 line drive percentage indicates. As good luck as Albers had last year, he's having bad luck this year. He's always been able to induce groundballs at a good clip, but only induced 22.2 percent of them on the year.
A pattern I noticed is that out of Albers' four major league seasons (with only 2007 and 2008 enough to fall out of small sample size bit) his only good MLB season in regards to ERA was 2008. He posted a career high in fastball percentage in 2008, throwing it 76.7 percent of the time. Despite a higher velocity in 2009, that fell to 67.9 percent on the year in 2009. Meanwhile, he's relying more on his curve and has brought back his changeup despite throwing it only 0.6 percent of the time last year.
Albers pitches as if he is a junkballer, but his average 92.1 mph fastball belies that. He should rely a bit more on his fastball to set up his other pitches. It seems as if he's pitching backward, and it's not working for him. His PITCHf/x indicates he has pretty good movement on his fastball (-8.4 horizontal movement, 7.0 vertical, not all that far off from Josh Beckett's fastball movement), so it has to be a result of him not trusting his fastball more. With a career 114/85 K/BB ratio, that's not all that surprising. What's holding Albers back at the moment is command. If he can develop it, he'll be a solid swingman.
New York Yankees optioned Steven Jackson to Scranton-Wilkes Barre Yankees.
Detroit Tigers optioned 1B Jeff Larish to Toledo Mud Hens.
San Diego Padres optioned CF Drew Macias to Portland Beavers.
Texas Rangers outrighted Josh Rupe to Oklahoma City RedHawks.
San Diego Padres called up LHP Arturo Lopez from Portland Beavers.
San Francisco Giants recalled 2B Eugenio Velez from Fresno Grizzlies.
Cincinnati Reds recalled Adam Rosales from Louisville Bats.
Detroit Tigers recalled LHP Clay Rapada from Toledo Mud Hens.
New York Yankees recalled RHP Phil Hughes from Scranton-Wilkes Barre Yankees.
Houston Astros recalled RHP Jeff Fulchino from Round Rock Express.
Fulchino is primarily a two-pitch pitcher: a fastball and slider. 29, I'm not sure what the Astros see in Fulchino as they claimed him off waivers from the Kansas City Royals in the offseason and has given Fulchino the opportunity in the majors that should, in my opinion, belong to Alberto Arias. Fulchino's peripherals on the year are not bad, but has already given up two home runs in just 7.1 innings. He consistently leaves his fastball up, which comes as no surprise. Why, then, do the Astros like him? He's towering at 6-foot-5 and 252 pounds, so he's very durable and has starting experience. With the brittle arms of Mike Hampton, Russ Ortiz, Brian Moehler and Brandon Backe, Fulchino may be called on to start a few games later in the year.
Washington Nationals activated SS Cristian Guzman from the 15-day disabled list.
Oakland Athletics transferred RHP Justin Duchscherer from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day disabled list.
Washington Nationals transferred CF Roger Bernadina from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day disabled list.
Oakland Athletics placed 2B Mark Ellis on the 15-day disabled list. Strained left calf.
Oakland Athletics placed 3B Nomar Garciaparra on the 15-day disabled list. Strained right calf.
Colorado Rockies placed 2B Jeff Baker on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 27, 2009. Sprained left hand
Cleveland Indians placed DH Travis Hafner on the 15-day disabled list. Right shoulder soreness.
This injury comes at a bad time for Hafner, who was recapturing the bat that made the Indians drop $57 million on an extension that starts this year. He'll probably never be the dangerous bat that he was from 2005-6, but hitting .270/.370/.540 with four home runs in 73 at-bats is certainly justifying his salary. His right shoulder is the one that has given him so much trouble recently, so the Indians want to be extremely cautious here. One giant red flag: Hafner will visit Dr. James Andrews this week. Any time the name "Dr. James Andrews" is uttered, you basically write the player off for a year. We'll see what Andrews finds floating in Hafner's shoulder.
Milwaukee Brewers placed C Mike Rivera on the 15-day disabled list. Sprained left ankle.
Washington Nationals optioned SS Alberto Gonzalez to Syracuse Chiefs.
Washington Nationals optioned Jason Bergmann to Syracuse Chiefs.
Los Angeles Angels outrighted Daniel Davidson to Salt Lake Bees.
Washington Nationals outrighted LHP Wilfredo Ledezma to Syracuse Chiefs.
Florida Marlins traded RHP Logan Kensing to Washington Nationals and Potomac Nationals traded RHP Kyle Gunderson to Jupiter Hammerheads.
This is a great fit for Kensing. As I mentioned last week when the Marlins designated Kensing for assignment:
Kensing is still young (26) and can still dial the fastball up to the mid-90s, so he'll get a shot somewhere else. In Kensing's two seasons where he's gotten more than a cup of coffee, he's struck out 113 in 106.1 innings, posting a 3.98 ERA.
For a team as desperate for pitching, Kensing makes a ton of sense for the Nationals. He does walk too many batters (career 5/13 BB/9) but again, in the two seasons where he's gotten a fair shake, he's been impressive despite a 5.0 BB/9 in those seasons.
Oakland Athletics called up RHP Kevin Cameron from Sacramento River Cats.
Oakland Athletics recalled 2B Eric Patterson from Sacramento River Cats.
Colorado Rockies recalled OF Matt Murton from Colorado Springs Sky Sox.
I never really understood why Murton all of a sudden stopped getting a fair shake at the big league level. In 905 career at-bats, he's logged a .288/.355/.438 line, which is pretty impressive. Not only that, but he's still 27 years old! He does struggle against right-handers to a tune of a .749 OPS, but that's hardly embarrassing and should make him one of the better platoon players in the game.
Cleveland Indians recalled LHP Rich Rundles from Columbus Clippers.
Seattle Mariners placed RHP Roy Corcoran on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 29, 2009. Strained neck
St. Louis Cardinals placed SS Brendan Ryan on the 15-day disabled list. Left hamstring injury.
Los Angeles Dodgers activated RHP Cory Wade from the 15-day disabled list.
Toronto Blue Jays reassigned RHP Casey Janssen to the minor leagues.
Los Angeles Dodgers transferred 1B Doug Mientkiewicz from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-Day disabled list.
RHP Kevin Jepsen assigned to Salt Lake Bees from Los Angeles Angels.
Timothy Norton assigned to Tampa Bay Rays from Staten Island Yankees.
Los Angeles Dodgers optioned Scott Elbert to Chattanooga Lookouts.
Toronto Blue Jays optioned Bryan Bullington to Las Vegas 51s.
Los Angeles Dodgers optioned Blake DeWitt to Albuquerque Isotopes.
Toronto Blue Jays optioned Brian Burres to Las Vegas 51s.
Toronto Blue Jays optioned Casey Janssen to Dunedin Blue Jays.
Janssen, 27, was lights out as a reliever for Toronto in 2007. He missed all of 2008 with injuries, but is being looked upon as a possible starter for the Jays. In 2006, he posted a 5.07 ERA, but his K/9 and BB/9 didn't regress too far from each other in both seasons, so his true value is somewhere in between. If he can return as a starter, he should be an above-average starter for years. With the Jays surprisingly on top of the AL East with a patchwork pitching staff, they theoretically can only get better with the addition of Janssen.
In his first rehab start in Single-A, he only allowed two hits over four innings, which is a great sign for his endurance. If he can accelerate his rehabilitation quickly, he should have no problem bumping David Purcey or Brian Tallet from the rotation, or one of the two new members of their rotation, which we'll get to later in this transactions recap.
Milwaukee Brewers called up C Carlos Corporan from Nashville Sounds.
Los Angeles Dodgers called up RHP Jeff Weaver from Albuquerque Isotopes.
Jeff Weaver lives! After Weaver turned a poor first half in for the Angels in 2006, he went to the Cardinals and helped them win a World Series. He grabbed the money and headed to Seattle, where he lasted only one year. In 2008, he pitched in Triple-A for the Brewers and Indians, posting 6.00+ ERAs for both teams, and his career looked to be over.
Heading to Triple-A to start 2009 for the Dodgers, Weaver looked to be back to his old self and quickly was promoted to the big leagues for a team off to a scorching start. The Dodgers shuffled their bullpen a bit this week, DLing Hong-Chih Kuo and optioning Scott Elbert. In their places are Weaver, Brent Leach and Cory Wade (the extra pitcher came at the expense of infielder Blake DeWitt).
St. Louis Cardinals recalled SS Tyler Greene from Memphis Redbirds.
Seattle Mariners activated C Kenji Johjima from the 15-day disabled list.
Texas Rangers placed CF Josh Hamilton on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 27, 2009. Straned left intercostal muscle.
Cleveland Indians activated LF David Dellucci from the 15-day disabled list.
Chicago White Sox placed CF Brian Anderson on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 30, 2009. Strained right oblique
Oakland Athletics placed 3B Eric Chavez on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 25, 2009. Strained right forearm.
Chicago White Sox activated 2B Jayson Nix from the 15-day disabled list.
Minnesota Twins activated C Joe Mauer from the 15-day disabled list.
The Twins held up admirably without Mauer, but the team is 1-2 with him. That won't last, as Mauer is hitting an obscene .700/.727/.1.200, showing he's certainly over the back problems that plagued him. I'm still concerned about those back problems, though, as there seems to be no real consensus on what the issue was.
Jose Morales, hitting .370, was demoted to Triple-A. He was off to a good start, but there's no good reason for the Twins to carry three catchers. Of course, the club could have cut Mike Redmond ... but his intangibles are reportedly off the charts. You're not going to see me disparage intangibles here, but at some point, a .572 OPS doesn't justify intangibles over a .784 OPS in 15 more at-bats. Morales will probably end up as Mauer's backup next year.
Joe Beimel assigned to Potomac Nationals from Washington Nationals.
3B Ryan Freel assigned to Bowie Baysox from Baltimore Orioles.
Toronto Blue Jays optioned LHP David Purcey to Las Vegas 51s.
Cleveland Indians optioned Rich Rundles to Columbus Clippers.
Arizona Diamondbacks outrighted Jon Coutlangus to Reno Aces.
San Diego Padres outrighted Mike Ekstrom to Portland Beavers.
Minnesota Twins outrighted RHP Juan Morillo to Rochester Red Wings.
Chicago White Sox outrighted LF Jerry Owens to Charlotte Knights.
San Diego Padres outrighted RHP Eulogio De La Cruz to Portland Beavers.
Toronto Blue Jays called up Brett Cecil, Robert Ray from Las Vegas 51s.
Ray has already made his major league debut. The 25-year old pitched five innings and allowed three runs. His team would later go on to lose in extra innings to the Orioles. He walked four, allowed four hits and struck out two. Ray was excellent in Double-A on the year, posting a 0.78 ERA. Again, however, he is 25 so was pitching against younger competition. He could fashion a career as a back of the rotation starter or reliever, but isn't among Toronto's top prospects.
Cecil, however, is 22 and a top prospect. The lefty will start Tuesday's game. He got off to an awful start in Triple-A, but rocketed up three levels last year, striking out a total of 129 in 118.2 innings. Cecil could stick the entire year at the back of the rotation and eventually morph into a front of the rotation starter. This is all predicated on Cecil making the conversion from college reliever to starter successfully, however. He struggles a bit with command, as is usual for most young pitchers but the talent is there. If he can't stick in the rotation, he'll certainly be a weapon out of the Jays' bullpen, possibly serving as their longterm closer.
Chicago White Sox called up OF Scott Podsednik from Charlotte Knights.
Scotty Po is back! The White Sox have played musical chairs at center field so far this year. Brian Anderson and DeWayne Wise are injured and Jerry Owens is now a Seattle Mariner. The club will give Brent Lillibridge more at-bats out of centerfield and hope Podsednik can recapture his 2005 magic for them. An option they may want to consider is to shift Alexei Ramirez to centerfield and see if Lillibridge can handle full-time duty at shortstop. Lillibridge isn't a scorcher with the stick, but he has tremendous defensive potential and with the White Sox offense and increasing reliance on defense across all of baseball, the club may come out ahead by putting Ramirez in center.
First, however, Ramirez has to hit.
Texas Rangers recalled Max Ramirez from Oklahoma City RedHawks.
Seattle Mariners recalled LHP Jason Vargas from Tacoma Rainiers.
Oakland Athletics recalled Gregorio Petit from Sacramento River Cats.
Toronto Blue Jays recalled Brian Wolfe from Las Vegas 51s.
Cleveland Indians placed RHP Joe Smith on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 29, 2009. Right rotator cuff strain.
Oakland Athletics placed RHP Santiago Casilla on the 15-Day disabled list retroactive to April 29, 2009. Sprained right knee.
Baltimore Orioles placed RHP Dennis Sarfate on the 15-day disabled list. Right middle finger injury
Seattle Mariners placed RHP Brandon Morrow on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 24, 2009. Right biceps tendinitis.
Los Angeles Dodgers placed LHP Hong-Chih Kuo on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 30, 2009. Sore left elbow. Los Angeles Dodgers recalled LHP Brent Leach from Chattanooga Lookouts.
Kuo had a sensational year last year and racked up a great K/BB ratio along with plenty of holds. His year last year plus the potential to steal a couple saves made him a target in fantasy leagues for me. A 1.69 WHIP, 1.00 K/BB ratio and 6.75 ERA later, I'm relieved he's hit the DL. The Dodgers will try to figure out what is happening with Kuo, who has undergone two Tommy John surgeries in his career. Certainly, he can't afford another one and threw two balls onto the playing field while trying to warm up to enter the game Friday.
Leach, a lefty, struck out 17 in 13 innings for Double-A, allowing only one run. He's 26, so he's old for Double-A, but reportedly flashes a great changeup that is his out-pitch. If Leach hadn't been on the 40-man roster, he likely wouldn't have been called up as he's also exhibited wildness. The Dodgers didn't want to juggle their 40-man roster any more than they had to with Jeff Weaver joining the club, however, so Leach it is.
Philadelphia Phillies activated C Carlos Ruiz from the 15-Day disabled list.
Mark Kotsay assigned to Pawtucket Red Sox from Boston Red Sox.
Ben Copeland assigned to Stockton Ports from Oakland Athletics.
Cleveland Indians designated 2B Tony Graffanino for assignment.
Cleveland Indians optioned Trevor Crowe to Columbus Clippers.
Philadelphia Phillies optioned Lou Marson to Lehigh Valley IronPigs.
Cleveland Indians called up Matt LaPorta from Columbus Clippers. Cleveland Indians recalled 2B Josh Barfield from Columbus Clippers. Cleveland Indians recalled 2B Luis Valbuena from Columbus Clippers.
The Indians are struggling, and with Travis Hafner hitting the DL, Matt LaPorta was brought up to help fill the void. He's not likely to contribute right away, but will share time in an attempt to do so. He was impressive in Triple-A, hitting .333/.414/.640 with five home runs, four doubles and three triples in 21 games. LaPorta can play left, right, first and of course, DH, so the Indians suddenly have a lot of versatality in an attempt to find hot hands and ride them to the quest for .500 which looks bleaker and bleaker with every passing day.
Barfield and Valbuena were recalled to try to inject some life into their middle infield. It comes at the expense of Trevor Crowe, but with Grady Sizemore, Shin-Soo Choo and now LaPorta, Crowe's better off getting regular at-bats. Barfield, who came over from San Diego for Kevin Kouzmanoff a few years ago, has devolved into a fringe player. Valbuena was acquired from the Seattle Mariners in the J.J. Putz/Franklin Gutierrez three-way trade and will see a few at-bats at second as the Indians try to snap Jhonny Peralta out of his awful slump.
It's good to see the Indians being proactive about getting their team in order. Their offense is 10th in the league in OPS but 29th in ERA. They haven't quite addressed their pitching deficiencies with these moves, but there's not much in the minors available to them. What the Indians desperately need is Fausto Carmona to stop stinking up the joint (1.64 WHIP and a 55.2 percent groundball rate with a career rate of 62.1 percent). Carl Pavano and Anthony Reyes have also been liabilities to date, and the Indians can't afford to sit around and wait any longer.
Unfortunately, as early as it is and with few teams out of the playoff hunt, the Indians will have to solve their problems internally. Jeremy Sowers had a terrible year last year but his FIP offers promise (5.58 ERA, 5.05 FIP). He's been lights out in Triple-A so far, so could get the call in short order. The club also has David Huff, a top prospect, also in Triple-A. He's checking in at a 3.21 ERA in five starts. He's yet another fourth/fifth starter candidate like Sowers, but that's better than the ninth/10th candidates that Pavano, Carmona and Anthony Reyes are providing the Indians with at the moment.
Seattle Mariners called up RHP Denny Stark from Tacoma Rainiers.
Oakland Athletics recalled LHP Gio Gonzalez from Sacramento River Cats.
The Athletics have predictably experienced growing pains with their young pitchers, but somehow rank sixth in the league in ERA, largely due to their bullpen. With four walks and one whiff in five innings on the seaosn, Gio isn't helping the A's keep up those numbers, despite a very strong showing in Triple-A (2.12 ERA, four starts, 17 innings, nine walks, 18 whiffs).
Gio is up because the Athletics have experienced a bevy of injuries recently, with Santiago Casilla hitting the DL. They've also been playing musical chairs in the infield and bring up the rear in all of baseball with a .648 OPS.
Kansas City Royals placed SS Tony Pena on the 15-day disabled list. Fractured left hamate bone.
New York Yankees placed LHP Damaso Marte on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 26, 2009. Left shoulder tendinitis.
Marte looks like a genius for taking three years and $12 million from the Yankees at the beginning of the offseason. Many others (some better) had to settle for lesser deals as the offseason went on. Marte has been gasoline on the fire that is the Yankees' bullpen. Only Mariano Rivera and the injured Brian Bruney have escaped the carnage. The Yankees recalled Anthony Claggett to take Marte's place but shipped him out a day later Monday for Alfredo Aceves. This is Claggett's second straight one-day stint in the big leagues.
RHP Kris Benson assigned to Frisco RoughRiders from Texas Rangers.
Minnesota Twins optioned Jose Morales to Rochester Red Wings.
Kansas City Royals called up SS Luis Hernandez from Omaha Royals.
Baltimore Orioles recalled Bob McCrory from Norfolk Tides.
McCrory saw some time in the bigs last year and was lit up. However, he was impressive enough in Triple-A that he barely missed out on a bullpen spot in spring training. The 27-year old is in the bigs now and could evolve into a setup man. With a 96 mph fastball, he'll be given a chance to do just that.
New York Yankees recalled Anthony Claggett from Scranton-Wilkes Barre Yankees.
Chicago White Sox signed 1B Daryle Ward to a minor league contract.
Washington Nationals signed RHP Mike MacDougal to a minor league contract.
A perfect landing spot for Mike MacDougal. He was acquired from the Royals in 2006 for Andy Sisco, and just could never put it together due to his propensity to walk batters and in more recent years, do a terrible job of stopping inherited runners from scoring. He could end up the Nats' closer, which would do wonders for his value as he would rarely enter with runners on base.
Evan Brunell is currently editor of Fire Brand of the American League, a Red Sox blog he began in 2003. He also scores games at Fenway Park for MLB. He was the co-founder and president of MVN, an independent sports media web site.